Building Your Company Identity: Image Branding

Nowadays, the traditional way of conducting business is vastly different from what it used to be. But one thing that hasn’t changed is the way business owners perceive their customers!

Today, businesses have become more competitive – and all of them are desperately trying to please their customers to carve their niche in the consumer market. In trying to cope with the daily demands of their business, you may sometimes find it very difficult to devise new strategies that can set your small business apart from the crowd.

No matter how busy you are, you cannot afford to overlook the importance of keeping your customers happy – that is, if you want to make a good profit. Business experts believe that it is a lot easier to boost sales if customers know your name or if your business is a recognized brand in the market.

Contrary to popular belief, brand building is not just about announcing the opening of your new retail outlet or the launch of your website, but is all about the relationship between your business and other aspects of it, such as your customers, investors, distributors, media, and your employees. Brand building, or creating a business identity, can work wonders for your business when it comes to sales and marketing.

So no matter how busy you are, make sure to invest some time and money into creating an identity for your small business and its products and services. If you don’t have a clue as to how to get started, here are a few tips:

Get Noticed

One of the best ways to do this is to form a relationship with a local charity, public playground, trade center or any prestigious project in order to enhance your market presence. You can give away free gifts, or support a cause that a particular organization works for, publicizing it through a press release.

The basic idea is to stay personally connected to the community that your target group belongs to, and get noticed.

Appearances Count

Some small business owners pay attention to publicity, but then neglect their basic promotional materials, such as stationery, business cards and logos. If you want prospective customers to take your business seriously, then you need to show that your business is a player in the market.

Don’t skimp when it comes to your company identity. Hire a good graphic designer who can design a good logo and business identity package for your company. The same professional can also help you with the design aspect of your marketing plan.

Track Your Customers

Every single customer is invaluable to your business, so you need a way to keep track of them. Invest in a good software program that can maintain a list of all your customers (and prospects), their personal details (birthdays and special occasions) and their buying habits to maintain lasting relations with them.

Sending personalized notes on special occasions and offers through the mail or by email is the key to establishing good relationships with your customers.

Give Away Free Information

People love to get a sound piece of advice or information – and even more so if it’s free. It’s no surprise that newsletters have emerged as an important tool for small businesses when it comes to expanding their customer base and fostering customer relationships.

Focus On Real-World Branding

If you are just starting out, focus mainly on creating a name and reputation for your business in the market. Many companies offer free T-shirts and other merchandise carrying their company logo as an indirect means of promoting their brands. Some small business owners choose to attach quick tips and their name and number on emails so that they are remembered. Blogging is another way of building your brand -just make sure that your blog contains your company logo and adheres to the theme of your small business.

With thousands of companies fighting for niche markets, it can become confusing for customers to choose a product or service that best fits their needs. That said, it will take some time before they trust your business enough to start buying from it on a regular basis. As your target audience starts noticing your company, and your sales increase, you can slowly move on to harness more meaningful strategies to expand your small business and enhance your customer base.

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